The Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA) chapter of the Medical and Dental Consultants Association of Nigeria (MDCAN) has issued a strike warning, announcing a three-day warning strike in response to ongoing disputes concerning retirement letters for untenured doctors on grade level 17.
In a letter to Nyesom Wike, minister of the FCT, the doctors said the strike will begin midnight on Wednesday.
The letter was signed by Emmanuel Musa, MDCAN chairman; and Uko Ekaette, its secretary-general.
The consultants said the decision was reached at an emergency congress meeting.
The medical consultants said they decided on the strike after efforts to reach an amicable resolution with the FCTA establishment failed.
“This decision was arrived at after failure of efforts of amicable resolution following engagement with the office of FCTA Establishment and the Permanent Secretary prior to the release of the retirement letter,” they said.
“Permit us sir to request for your prompt intervention in the misinterpretation and misapplication of circular on revised Public Services Rules (PSR) (2021 Section: 020909), policy tenure).
“It is directly applicable only to tenured office holders to unjustifiably retire our members who hold untenured position of medical consultants on GL17.
“Contrary to the circular emanating from the office of the Head of Service on the same matter, the circular Ref no: FCTA/HRM/S141145/vol 1 of Aug. 9, 2023 endorsed by the permanent secretary, FCTA has attempted to include medical consultants on GL17 to tenured positions.
“We would like to state categorically herein that medical consultant position on GL 17 has never been regarded as a tenured position.
“In support of this, there was a precedence of an exception of Medical Consultants in clinical service.”
The medical consultants explained that the FCTA was the only administration/ministry that has misinterpreted, misapplied and implemented the circular in Nigeria.
The consultants called for an immediate withdrawal of the compulsory retirement letters to its members.
“Hope you are not being sabotaged Sir and assuredly if this is allowed to sail, the entire health care system will collapse,” the group added.
“We hereby call for an immediate withdrawal of the compulsory retirement letters served our members who have not attained their retirement by year of service or age.
“We look forward to your immediate and urgent intervention to resolve this burning issue.”
On July 27, the office of the head of civil service issued a circular addressed to ministries, departments and agencies (MDAs) to ensure compliance with the revised public service rules (PSR).
The memo was also sent to permanent secretaries, the accountant-general of the federation, the auditor-general for the federation, and heads of the extra-ministerial department, informing them of the revised rules.
Part of the rules require that directors in the civil service, who have spent eight years, should proceed on immediate retirement.